Camborne Town won our 91st annual contest on Saturday.
Under the baton of John Berryman they produced a fine rendition of the set work, ‘The Wayfarer’ by Eric Ball to retain the famous Royal Trophy and take the £1,000 first prize – their fifth win in the last seven years and the 38th time in the competition’s history.
Once again there was plenty of fine music making to enjoy with crowds lining the streets for the traditional march to and from the Molinnis Park venue, whilst this year’s event attracted competitors from as far afield as Switzerland, with the welcome appearance of Regional Brass Band Bern.
In a closely fought Cornish battle for the title, the Albert Hall finalists managed to catch the ear of adjudicator Derek Broadbent to claim a single point victory over St Dennis, with St Austell in third. The band also took the honours in the Hymn tune category with a warmly shaped rendition of ‘Crimond’.
There was also plenty of excellent individual playing on show with well deserved awards taken by Mark Harrison, Demelza Sturges, Francesca Bazeley and Kim Bazeley, with Camborne Town taking the ‘Best Basses’ prize.
There was another successful title defence in the First Section as the rapidly rising Regional Champion Roche Brass took the honours directed by David Hirst. Fellow Cheltenham finalists Yeovil Town was second with Helston Town in third.
Roche’s performances of ‘Fantasy for Brass Band’ and the march ‘Centaur’ saw them claim both category honours with solo euphonium Robert Jose also taking the ‘Best Soloist’ prize.
Bodmin hat trick
In the Second Section Bodmin secured a hat-trick of Bugle victories. Under the direction of John Maines they enjoyed commanding margins of victory over rivals Bugle Silver in both the test piece and march categories. Principal cornet Miriam Moore claimed the ‘Best Player’ accolade.
There was also a hat-trick of victories to enjoy for the talented young players of Camborne Junior Contesting, as they emulated their senior counterparts with a clear cut victory in the Third Section over second placed Tadley Concert Brass with Jubilee Brass (Oxford) in third.
Under Alan Pope’s direction the Third Section national finalists produced a fine rendition of ‘Saint Saens Variations’ with their talented soprano player Matthew Opie taking the ‘Best Player’ award.
Devon fantasy for Okehampton
There were plenty of celebrations to enjoy for Okehampton Excelsior Silver, as the band from the northern edge of Dartmoor in Devon claimed their first Bugle title under the direction of Richard Beardon.
The band has won a number of deportment and march prizes at the contest in recent years (winning the Deportment award once more), but this was the first time they claimed the Fourth Section honours with victory over rivals, Tadley Concert with Redruth in third, thanks to a fine performance of the appropriately titled, ‘Devon Fantasy’ by Eric Ball.
The excellence of community based young player development in the county was heard to fine effect in the Youth Section, where St Austell took the honours ahead of Mount Charles and St Dennis, with rising stars in William Lucas and Hannah Plum ridge taking well deserved individual honours.
Meanwhile in the Training Section, the excellent Soundhouse Brass led the way from Lostwithiel and Saltash Junior.
The A.R. Trudgian Youth Awards were presented to Megan Thomas of Bugle Silver and Matthew Brown of Camborne.